Last night I got around to desolder and replace the transistor in my simple Bazz Fuss circuit.
Getting it off the board proved every little bit as frustrating as I had imagined, and I ended up demolishing it to a point where it could not be tested for functional errors.
Either way, I soldered in a new one and tried it out.
Unfortunately it made not difference. The clean, bypassed signal sounds normal, but as soon as I engage the effect I get this oddly clipped, blorring and ‘farting’ sound which increases in awfulness as I turn up the volume.
It is a distorted signal, but somewhere something is still way off….
If you have any tips or thoughts, please share in the comments.
I got a package in the mail today containing a DIY pedal kit, Der Angel from Musikding.
This is the first time I order from them, but based on the service and the quality of the packaging I suspect it wont be the last.
Let’s see when I can carve out some time to actually solder it together :).
It’s really odd to switch like this from being heavily into electronica and synthesisers to going 100% into the guitar again.
But there’s something very immediate about it that really appeals to me right now. No cables to connect, no software to update, no keyboard shortcuts to remember or midi timing issues to worry about. Just pick up the guitar and play.
If I’m feeling adventurous I might just turn the amp on… Maybe even a pedal or two.
And, almost out of sight, in the corner of my eye sits the one piece I couldn’t let go of. My Native Instruments Maschine. Actually the piece that started me down the electronica path back in 2012.
I’m holding off for the moment. Savouring in my mind the moment I’ll start playing with it again…
Another great thing about the guitar is that I suck at it.
It’s great because it means there is no pressure to be creative yet. No stress to create actual music or publish polished tracks. For now it’s all about learning the basic handling.
Chords, scales, picking and strumming…
Kind of meditative in a way.
Ok, so mechanically all should be connected and soldered properly, but for some reason I’m not getting anything but farting noises out of the effect signal. The clean, bypassed signal sounds great (at least the footswitch and status LED seems to be working :) ).
Given the simplicity of the circuit that leaves only two suspects.
Either the diode is fried, or the transistor has given up its ghost.
Thus, today I removed the diode and tested it with the multimeter, only to confirm that there was no problems with it. I tested a new one and soldered it into the circuit, confirming that there are no shorts.
So, back to square 2. Tomorrow I will test the transistor as well. If you have any tips on how to remove a soldered in transistor please share :)
After essentially hitting the wall and running out of ideas yesterday, my good friend Nicklas pointed out that I had a suspicious solder joint in the lower left side of this photo:
And of course he was right. If ever there was a cold joint :). A quick resolder took care of that, now the signal is at least stable.
Lesson learned: Always check, check and check your solder joints again. A bad solder won’t always come loose right away, but can let go while you are fiddling around with your contraption.
Rechecking all the other joints revealed nothing out of the ordinary…